Mississippi State University is committed to supporting and increasing women's participation in information assurance, specifically through the National Science Foundation Scholarship for Service (SFS) program.
Women represented only 16% of the total SFS scholarship recipients given at MSU. However, the number of potential female applicants is much higher. With a capacity building grant awarded in 2010, MSU has been engaged in a project to increase interest among young women in the cyber security field.
In 2011, we conducted our first all-women summer camp with 20 rising high school junior and senior campers and a summer research experience with six women. Assessments were conducted with these women before and after the experience, and the results validated our approach to provide realistic, hands-on experiences in a women-only environment.
MSU has been a National Center of Academic Excellence (CAE) in Information Assurance Education since 2001, was re-certified for the fourth time in 2012, and has been giving scholarships under the SFS program since 2002. Approximately 77 SFS scholarships have been awarded to MSU students to date. MSU awards SFS scholarships to support B.S., M.S., and Ph.D. students in Information Assurance fields, such as computer science, computer engineering, software engineering, electrical engineering, industrial and systems engineering, and business information systems. MSU was also designated as a Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance Research in 2008, the first year for such designation.